DWP Updates Funding and Investment Strategy Regulations

The DWP has published an updated draft of the Occupational Pension Schemes (Funding and Investment Strategy and Amendment) Regulations 2024 (the “Regulations“) replacing the draft published on 29 January 2024. The updated Regulations clarify previous ambiguity in the timing of the changes being made. The new funding regime will apply to all actuarial valuations with … Read more

Government gives green light to statutory regime for DB Superfunds

Following the Chancellor’s Mansion House speech, the Government has finally issued a response to its December 2018 consultation on implementing a statutory regime for the regulation of defined benefit (DB) consolidator vehicles, known as “Superfunds”. Development of a statutory regime has been held up by debate within Government, and the pensions industry, over the nature … Read more

Life as a Professional Trustee: EP1

In the latest podcast from the Herbert Smith Freehills’ pensions team, Tim Smith, Professional Support Consultant, is joined by Jane Beverley, Professional Trustee at Law Debenture to discuss: • what life is like as a professional trustee; • key challenges schemes are grappling with at the moment; • a trustee perspective on calls for pension … Read more

Improved outcomes expected for DB schemes affected by corporate distress

Successful multi-creditor re-financings and restructurings require those involved to understand the commercial and legal priorities of other stakeholders in order for a positive outcome to be achieved and unnecessary value destruction avoided. To aid this we have collaborated with Grant Thornton UK LLP to publish ‘Getting inside each other’s heads’ – a paper which explores … Read more

The Evolving At Retirement Pensions Market

In the latest podcast from the Herbert Smith Freehills’ pensions team, Mark Howard, Of Counsel, is joined by Claire Altman, Managing Director of Individual Retirement at Phoenix to discuss: the challenges for retirement decision making; retirement product design and advice for members; and whether collective DC schemes might offer an alternative solution at retirement. To … Read more

Annual Funding Statement 2023: Trustees urged to lock in funding gains and review long term targets

Overall, the Regulator’s Annual Funding Statement strikes a positive tone with most defined benefit schemes experiencing improved funding levels through a combination of investment out-performance from return-seeking assets and a significant rise in gilt yields. Around a quarter of schemes are expected to be funded above buy-out; with many others exceeding their technical provisions. However, … Read more

Funding Code delayed, new LDI guidance and further updates from tPR

The Pensions Regulator has confirmed that the new statutory funding requirements for defined benefit (DB) schemes and the associated new Code of Practice will not now come into force until April 2024 at the earliest. This is set out in the Regulator’s Corporate Plan for 2023/24, which also contains updates on the new General Code, … Read more

Evolution or revolution? Recent developments in pensions M&A

In the latest podcast from Herbert Smith Freehills’ pension team, Michael Aherne, Partner, is joined by Alex Hutton-Mills, Co-founder and Head of Pension Corporate Finance at Cardano Advisory, to discuss corporate transactions involving occupational pension schemes and how the UK’s regulatory framework has changed over the past decade. In particular, Michael and Alex discuss: The … Read more

UK Government and Bank of England launch Consultation on a Digital Pound

On 7 February, the Bank of England (the Bank) and His Majesty’s Treasury (HM Treasury) jointly published a Consultation Paper on the development of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) for the UK (or a digital pound). The three key takeaways in respect of a likely digital pound are: No final decision has been made on whether there will be … Read more